Many supplement companies have spent millions on the research and development of weight gain formulas. Bodybuilders, football players, strength athletes, and members of the general public who want to gain weight seek out these formulas to aid in their efforts. There are many quality products on the market, and they do help a great deal, however, it is important to start with good whole foods and use these supplements as they were designed, to supplement a solid diet.
Top Weight Gain Foods
A good quality diet with lots of vitamin rich, calorie dense foods is the foundation of any weight gain plan. Foods rich in lean proteins provide the necessary amino acids for solid muscle growth. Foods high in complex carbohydrates provide long term energy for those intense workouts, and the various metabolic processes involved in muscle development. Healthy fats and oils provide fuel and cushioning for the body, as well as replenishment for the essential fat stores in the body and transport and storage of fat soluble vitamins.
What kind of foods contain those essentials, along with quality vitamins and minerals? Natural foods are a good start.
Best Protein For Gaining Weight
Protein can be found in most meats and here is a look a good protein sources:
- Chicken, turkey, pork, and beef are all good sources of protein. Of course, chicken, turkey, lean cuts of pork and lean red meat choices are better for overall health and to ensure that the weight gained is muscle instead of fat.
- Fish is another good source of protein, and it has the added bonus of providing quality omega-3 fatty acids.
- Nuts and seeds are another good choice for protein mixed with healthy fats.
- Red meat provides much needed iron, which is essential for transporting oxygen in the blood.
- Eggs are another great protein source, with the whites providing almost purely protein and the yolks containing the fat, and the vitamins and minerals.
- Milk is another common protein source. Low fat or skim milks provide the necessary protein and carbohydrates, without the fat.
Good Carbs For Gaining Weight
Carbohydrates can be found in most foods of plant origin:
- Vegetables are great sources of complex carbohydrates and fiber. They are also rich in vitamins and minerals needed by the body.
- Whole grain products also provide quality carbohydrates for sustained energy.
- Fruits are good choices for the vitamin and mineral content, however, their carbohydrates are generally simple sugars and should be eaten in moderation.
- Pasta, rice, and whole grain cereals are great bulk carbohydrate choices and should be a staple in the diet of anyone looking to gain weight.
Good Fats To Gain Weight
Healthy fats are important because they help regulate some of the anabolic hormones, transport and store fat soluble vitamins, provide an extremely long term energy source, and cushion and protect the vital organs and joints.
Good sources of healthy fats are nuts, seeds, fish, olives, olive oil, and flax seed among other sources. These are all healthy choices that should be incorporated into the diet and add variety.
There are many good protein, carbohydrate, and healthy fat choices at the grocery store. Protein powders, meal replacement drinks, and weight gain formulas help to supplement these whole foods to make sure you get enough calories to feed the muscle building machine. A few well chosen supplements and some intense weight training to stimulate the muscles for growth will finish the formula. So, eat some solid foods, train hard, and supplement when needed for mounds of much needed mass.